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Jasmin’s experience: Summer, Sun, Beach and Sea

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Jasmin’s experience: Summer, Sun, Beach and Sea

The fastest way to the beach

Hi again!

As reported in my last article, summer has arrived Montpellier for quite some time now. We usually have 25 to 30 degrees Celsius and blue skies. The countless cafés next to our French Language School ILA fill up quickly in the morning with the first ray of sunshine, people enjoy the sun and it is a vibrant atmosphere in the city.

Everybody is ready for the beach, so the weekly newspaper of Montpellier called “La Gazette” published a very interesting article on how to get there without a car. To allow all ILA French language students to join the wonderful beaches around Montpellier easily during their French immersion, here is a brief summary:

1.) Take the train to Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone

One of the quickest and cheapest ways is to take the train from Gare Saint-Roch in Montpellier (5 minutes’ walk from our French Language School ILA) to Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone. The train ride takes only 5 minutes and the tickets are 2,20 €. You can bring your bike along and then cycle from the station in about 20 minutes to the Plage du Pilou.

2.) With the bike to the beach

There are two ways to get by bike from our French language school in downtown Montpellier, to the beach. Both cycle paths start at Port-Marianne: One along the river Le Lez up to Palavas and the other along the Avenue Raymond-Dugrand and Tram Line 3 to Carnon Plage. Either way, you need about 30-45 minutes to the beach.

3.) With the bus and bike to Plage du Pilou

To use this facility from Montpellier, you can take the bus line 32 from the tram stop Garcia Lorca to “Pilou” in Villeneuve-lès-Maguelone (takes about 20 minutes). There, the TAM (Transports de l’agglomération de Montpellier) provides 200 bikes free of charge. In June these bikes are only available the weekends, but from the 1st of July to the 31st of August 2016, they are available all week long. To rent a bike there, all you need is to present your valid TAM transport ticket, and an identity card as a deposit. From there, it is only 10-15 minutes to the beach. A little extra advantage,is the wider tires of the wheels on these bikes, with which one can even ride through sand.

4.) With the new bus to Palavas

The news of this summer is the recent bus line 131 of Hérault-transport which connects the tram stop Garcia Lorca in Montpellier to the Salle Bleue in Palavas, in just 20 minutes. Around 20 buses run per day between 8 am and 6.30 pm. The last bus back leaves at 8.40 pm at “Salle Bleue” in Palavas. The exact departure times can be found under www.herault-transport.fr. A single ticket cost € 1.60 and can be purchased directly on the bus.

5.) With the tram to Carnon Plage

Very near our French immersion school ILA is the stop Observatoire of the tramway number 3. If you take this to the last stop Etang de l’Or, you can then walk up to Plage Carnon. Alternatively, you might also be able to use the shuttle service of Hérault-transport. This is available free of charge if you submit a valid TAM ticket. Otherwise a ticket costs € 1.50. The ride to Grand Travers takes about 10 minutes. For those who like cycling, there are around 40 bikes of Vélomagg available at the bus stop Etang de l’Or. The price is 50 cents per hour. However, we recommend to get there early on weekends if you like want to hire a bike.

6.) With the bus to La Grande-Motte

The bus of the Hérault Transports no. 106 connects the station “Place de France” near Odysseum with the resort La Grande-Motte and the beach Grand Travers in about 25 minutes. In June, the buses run every 30 minutes from 11am to 5.30pm. The last return trip is at 8.20 pm. From 1st July, buses run every 15 minutes between 9.45 am and 5.30 pm, and the last return journey is at 10.10 pm. A single ticket cost 1.60€ and the exact departure times are available under www.herault-transport.fr

Personally, I love to ride a bike to the beach. So far I have only tried the bike paths along the river Le Lez and along the beach from Carnon to La Grande Motte, but they are really very nice to cycle! It is away from the busy streets, in fantastic nature landscapes; on the way you see a horse ranch, the famous Etangs (salt lagoons) and many wild, pink flamingos. The bus to La Grande Motte is fast and comfortable and the beaches Petit and Grand Travers have fantastic beautiful sandy beaches and are perfect for swimming or sun bathing! So the perfect way to relax after your French language course!

Stay on the Blog, I will post some more info soon about Montpellier!

Yours Jasmin